Isaiah 43:5

Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bring your children from the east and gather you from the west. Isaiah 43:5

Monday, December 15, 2014

"I like you to come home to my Mommy's house..."

On December 4th, 2014, we celebrated another extremely special event.  The premiere of "Find Me" was held at our local theater!! 
Kathi excited to see "Find Me" in lights

"Uncle Dave" with his Luuucy girl
   Before the viewing of the film, we enjoyed dinner at a local Chinese restaurant with our friends, the producers of  "Find Me", Dave & Kathi Peters and Michael Rottina. God,  as our divine Red Thread, used Mike and David while in China in 2012 as very key pieces of the puzzle in guiding us to our girl.  While at dinner, Lucy leaned over and told her "Uncle Dave" and I quote in Lucy's words - "I like you to come home to my Mommy's house" - that's  her sweet "Chinglish"for..... "I love you for bringing me home to my Mommy's house "(family)!!!  I had told "Uncle Dave" on several occasions over the past year that I felt that our very intelligent little girl knew that he and "Uncle Mike"  were instrumental in bringing her home from China.  Lucy chooses to speak very little about her life in China and her adoption.  That one impromptu, love filled sentenced said so very much.   She's known!!  She's grateful and she's happy!  Thank you Dave and Mike for listening to God's prompting and making a detour in that day's plans, and helping to  be a voice for a voiceless little girl waiting for her family.  We are forever grateful!
With  lots of excitement, and some nervousness,  we watched the theater seats quickly fill.   Uncle Dave made a few opening remarks including one that told everyone in the theater that this was the first time that the families featured in the documentary would be seeing the film.   While we often talk about living in China, her "China Mom" (foster mom), her adoption, we didn't know how she might react to seeing it all on the huge screen,  and virtually  reliving a very emotional experience that only happened just over a year ago.  She sat on Mommy's lap with Daddy right beside us.  I'm not sure she budged the entire 80 minutes except to pull my arms tighter around her at different times.  I have no doubt that she is continually  processing all the trauma that she's been through in her four years of life (and will continue to process)...., Daddy and Mommy had tears rolling down our cheeks only minutes into the film....... 
Find Me is a beautiful, captivating, emotional and love filled documentary.  To God be the glory!  And again thank you David Peters, Kathi Peters and Michael Rottina for your labor of love in the making of this film.  May it be used as an instrument in helping more families find their children......

Unfortunately we did not get any pictures on premiere night with Lucy's beloved "Uncle Mike." 

Copies of the dvd will be for sale via vision video in the near future as well as streaming options.  Details to follow.  If you have questions about obtaining a copy of a Finid Me  dvd - please e-mail me at or leave a comment.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Between Surgeries (2 of 2)

This window of time between surgeries has flown by.  Landing right between Thanksgiving and Christmas, our family has been very busy and having a non-weight bearing/ambulatory child hasn't slowed us or our schedule down!

After getting a six a.m. flight from  Missouri into Baltimore, we celebrated Thanksgiving Day (and Mommy's birthday) with extended family, followed by another family tradition on the Saturday following T-giving - the annual Zimmerman family cookie bake.  Two weeks post surgery, Lucy did  well with the extra family events and had lots of fun.
Team work!

Sprinkling the sandtarts

This girl stuck with it 'til the bitter end!
The day following the big cookie bake, Sunday) Lucy Kim was so excited to see "her Emmy" again.  Away at Bible college for four months in Costa Rica, our family greatly missed our fun loving, musically talented, lovable and silly red head!
Having traveled to China with us last year to bring our baby girl home, Emily and Lucy share a special and sweet sister bond.  In fact maybe that bond's a little to close because now BOTH GIRLS are in leg casts!  Monday afternoon found Emily and I at the orthopedic doctor's office where we learned that Emily had a fractured foot.  She apparently broke a small bone above her heel while at a water slide in Costa Rica two weeks before coming home! (yep, she limped around for two weeks on a broken foot).  Lucy's reaction to seeing Emily in a cast was funny - "Same, same Emily"!!
One has a cast on the right leg the other the left!

Same, same!
Last year Lucy was only home three months from China when we celebrated Jesus' birth.   When  Lucy's Mom-Mom decorated her house and put up the Christmas tree, she was one very excited little girl!  She just loved the decorations and didn't give us any peace until Daddy put up our Christmas tree.  She had a fun time putting the decorations on the lower part of the tree and then convinced her Daddy to hold her up to decorate some of the taller branches.

Lucy is scheduled to have her next surgery with Dr. Dobbs in St. Louis (to remove the pin in her foot) on December 23rd.

* Check back,....coming entitled "Lucy's adoption on film....Find Me" to read about another very special event our family experienced together recently....

Friday, December 12, 2014

Between Surgeries (1 of 2)

The cast that was put on Lucy Kim in the operating room was bigger, heavier and bulkier then her pre-surgery casts.  Because the cast was "split," the plaster was covered with a dark green ace bandage type material.  It began to look frayed quickly (because of rubbing against furniture, moving in bed, etc.)  Her big sister called it the "shabby chic look."  Hipster cast girl!

Two weeks after Lucy's surgery, she needed to be seen by Dr. Dobbs for a wound check.

 The blessing of Lucy's cast being split (allowing for swelling after surgery) meant that the loud, scary cast remover machine did NOT need to be used to take off the cast!!  Wohoo!
Prying the cast open on each side
Seeing her foot for the first time since surgery
2 weeks post surgery

Daddy always by her side!
While there was a lot of bruising and  some swelling, the doctor said the surgery site looked good, the pin was still in place and Dr. Dobbs was also very pleased with the range of motion he seemed to get from the foot and ankle, two weeks post surgery.
Poor Lucy was a bit shocked to see her foot post surgery.  It appeared that with the cast off and her foot and leg exposed, she felt very vulnerable and unprotected.  Anyone who entered the room to look at her foot she would quietly tell "be gentle, be gentle." 

Lucy was re-casted for the LAST time (seventh cast) and she chose the color black for this cast.  This final cast will be on the longest of any of the casts.  Approximately four weeks.  Protected inside the cast, her foot will continue to heal from the trauma of surgery.

After a whirlwind trip, we came back home on Thanksgiving morning.  

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Lucy Kim will be on the big screen!

Blog readers that have been following our journey to Lucy Kim from the beginning of this blog will likely remember that we first saw our sweet girl in December 2012 when we watched a you tube clip advocating for her family to find her! see you tube clip here

Lucy Kim's journey home continued to be chronicled on  film and her adoption will be featured along with two other families' adoption stories in a touching documentary called "Find Me." 
Enjoy the  2 1/2 minute trailer!

Find Me - The Documentary from findMe international on Vimeo.

 From the time God first asked us  to step out in faith and bring another daughter into our family, we have prayed that God would be glorified through this journey.  It remains our prayer and now through the viewing of this documentary!

Bring a friend and help us fill the theater at the premier showing at Penn Cinema in Lititz, PA.  One theater for one night only on Thursday, December 04, 2014 at 7:00 p.m.  Tickets can be purchased at the box office at Penn Cinema-  Airport Road, Lititz or online at (search Lititz, PA and Dec. 4)
Merle and I with Lucy's Foster Mama - Xi'an, China
**If you don't live close to Lititz or are unable to come, this is what the producer had to say about viewing this documentary.... "After the premiere next month we will be finalizing the film and authoring a DVD that will be carried by our distributor Vision Video.  We will definitely let everyone know when it's available."

Monday, November 17, 2014

Home from surgery

A quick update on Lucy Kim....

After posting the last update, Lucy turned a corner and Lucy has improved each day since.  Thankfully there were no more high temps after hitting that 103 fever on Wednesday afternoon.  She was kept comfortable with ibuprofen and acetaminophen through Friday.  Since then she's been pretty much pain med. free!

On Saturday, Nov. 15th,  we left Room 3 in the Orioles wing of Haven House after being there for twelve days and as planned we left St. Louis, to travel back home to Pennsylvania.

We were all so glad to be reunited with our family!

Two days later, things are pretty much back to our groove.  Not for long though -- next week we'll need to fly back to St. Louis for a quick "wound care check".  Dr. Dobbs will remove Lucy's split cast and check the surgery site making sure that the pin that was put in didn't "migrate."  She'll be re-casted with a regular full length cast for another four weeks ( keeping the foot in a prone position while the pin is in).  Then close to  Christmas, she'll undergo a second surgery to have the pin removed and  if there are no complications, she will be done with casting!!  At that time Lucy will trade in casts for AFO's (ankle foot brace).
Our Pop-Pop is a big teaser!

3-D glasses for her coloring project with her big bro's
Thank you for your love and prayers!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Musings from Missouri (part 4/surgery)

On the morning of surgery, Lucy seemed her typical little self.  In fact she did her normal car thing and serenaded us from the parking lot at Haven House to the hospital parking garage.  When Lucy sings, we know that "all is right in her world."  The first eight to ten months home, we did not hear music coming from the back seat instead when we'd glance back we'd often see a somber look and/or that dreaded car sick look.  Hearing her sing was such a blessing to me as I knew that meant she wasn't yet having anxiety about her surgery (because I did explain to her what was going to happen and I wasn't sure with having just had a major surgery on her spinal cord seven months ago, how she was going to feel about hearing the word "surgery"?)
Hospital gowns and orange casts
Not long after we checked in, we we called back to the pre-op. rooms.  I questioned what time surgery was slated for and was told about 9:50.  Great!  This gave plenty of time to have Lucy's current (orange) cast removed and  then she would be molded for her AFO's (more about those in a later post).  I was praying that the removal of the cast would NOT trigger an onslaught of trauma for our little girl leading up to surgery time.

I'm soo excited to tell you that God overwhelmed Lucy with  a sense of security so much so that she did.not.cry.or.scream.!  In all the casts she's had since coming home (including breaking her arm) which is more than ten times, she's been so fearful.  Not so much today.  She had her hello kitty earphones on and Daddy put his arms around her on the bed and she took her daddy's hands and covered her eyes (which was such a wise move on her part) and Mommy held her other hand.  She was notably nervous but not traumatized like so often it appeared.  Still thanking God for that blessing as it set her up for continued calm as we ended up waiting until about 11:30 until she was taken into surgery.
Thumbs up for hello kitty headphones
Debating which song to listen to next
Thus the shoe size difference!

The drowsys settling in after having her versed

Last minute snuggles with Mommy
Dr. Dobbs performed what's called an open reduction internal fixation with k-wire fixation (pin insertion), long toe flexor tenotomy and a tendo-achilles lengthening.  Whew - how's that for a mouth full!  Surgery went well and within about an hour and a quarter the doctor was done the surgical portion.  After the surgery was completed, Lucy had her cast put on while in the operating room - a split leg cast was put on and overwrapped tightly w/ dark green ace bandage.  This allows for swelling of surgical areas yet still keeping foot in proper position.  Miss Lucy is a hard one to come out of anesthesia -- the recovery room nurse gave up and took her sound asleep four floors up to settle her in the room she would be in over night.

Nausea is awful
Lucy's inter venous sight was kept so that regular intervals of medication could be administered via her IV sight throughout the evening and early morning.  Pain was managed well all evening she struggled more with on and off bouts of nausea from the anesthesia throughout the night.  

Nausea was controlled and pain seemed to be managed which were the green lights needed to be discharged!  We left St. Louis Children's Hospital about 10:30 a.m. and headed back to Haven House.
Not long after settling back into our room, Lucy took a nice long nap.  I had a feeling when she awoke she'd have pain.  After about a two hour nap, Lu Lu woke up crying because of pain and was extremely hot.  I had Daddy run next door to Walgreen's and pick up a thermometer.  Poor baby had a temp. of 103.  As instructed, I called the Doctor's office (and my Mama!).  Since she has no other symptoms and about an hour after giving her tylenol her temp. was coming down the nurse at the dr.'s office just told us to keep a close eye on her and make sure the temp. did come down if it spikes too high, we'll have to head into ER.  

Throughout the remainder of the afternoon and up until now (6:45 p.m.) we've been keeping either acetaminophen or ibuprofen in her system and a damp wash cloth on her forehead  to keep pain (and fever) at bay as well as her foot constantly elevated as her toes were getting puffy/swollen.

That's the update from St. Louis, Missouri.  Thanks so much friends for your love and prayers.  Please keep praying that Lucy will continue to heal, we can keep her pain managed without the use of the stronger narcotics we have in and that fevers won't spike.  We are scheduled to travel back to Pennsylvania on Saturday and we want a fever and pain free girl en route!

Musings from Missouri (part 3)

          (click on a picture to see larger)

The day before Lucy's moved up surgery date, Monday, Nov. 8th was another spectacular day to be outdoors.  Sunshine, warm and windy at 68 degrees.   Knowing we're going to be "hospital or house bound" the next few days, we drove about 20 minutes from where we're staying here at Haven House to to see the Gateway Arch here in St. Louis.  Daddy and Lucy took the ride/walk up to the top of the arch (because of Mom's fear of heights, she gladly waited at the bottom).  Daddy reported that Lucy girl loved looking out the small windows all over St. Louis and other parts of Missouri!  This girl obviously does not have the "fear of heights" thing goin' on like her Mama!
We then lollygagged around the historic museum at the base of the arch.  We enjoyed looking at the beautifully displayed artifacts of early American history.


G-o-i-n-g U-P!!

Big girl wants to sit by the door

Peeking out the small windows at top of arch

On the way back from the arch, we pass the zoo and at Lucy's biding we made a second visit to our animal friends.  The zoo was open for one more hour and the weather was still so beautiful so we put our girl back into the stroller and enjoyed visiting several exhibits we missed on our first visit.

We loved the seals!

Whoa is that cascading water I see?

S-n-a-k-e-s!!!  YUCK!

tight hugs when it's a critter she doesn't like up close!

This is one BIIIIG turtle!

Boa constrictor

With surgery in the morning we headed back to our home away from home for our supper made by the lovely "Miss Georgia" (she cooks for the guests of Haven House - breakfast and supper - Monday through Friday) and to get Lucy Kim bathed and to bed early. We had been told to report to the hospital at 8:15 a.m.
Dear Miss Georgia!
This is a little sitting area outside of the dining hall  at H.H.

I'd love to learn more about the history of this wonderful place "Haven House," Merle noticed this on the side of the building?!

Here is one of many sentiments from those who have stayed here that was written and posted on an employee's door.  This place is truly a haven to those families in medical need.  This family is very grateful!

After tucking L.K. in for the night we chose one of the reading/listening options we brought!  (Don't judge :)